8th November 2023: China’s October Foreign Trade Data

This episode contains segments on China’s October foreign trade data; the opening of the sixth China International Import Expo and the Hongqiao International Economic Forum; the next EU-China summit that is to take place in December and the IMF’s latest growth forecast for China. From the Chamber’s side: on 10th November, European Commissioner for Internal Market Thierry Breton will join a lunch meeting with the European Chamber’s members and share his insights on EU de-risking in the context of the bloc’s industrial strategy.


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Read more:

China foreign trade data, October (in Chinese)



Sixth China International Import Expo (CIIE) and the Hongqiao International Economic Forum


Chamber event: Lunch meeting with Commissioner Thierry Breton – De-risking, digitalising and decarbonising European industry


IMF 2023 Article IV Mission to the People’s Republic of China



XINHE: Hello and welcome to China Shortcuts,

MARIANN: the European Chamber’s weekly catchup on China’s business landscape.


XINHE: In value terms, China’s exports continued to fall, while imports unexpectedly rebounded in October.

MARIANN: In dollar-denominated terms, the total value of China’s exports dropped 6.4 per cent year-on-year. The rate of decrease was more pronounced than analysts’ forecasts, and showed a slight acceleration from the previous month. The value of Chinese exports shrank for the sixth month in a row in October. Meanwhile, the total value of imports surged 3 per cent compared to the same period last year, which came as a surprise, as analysts expected the 11-month-long trend of decline to continue. The October reading marked the strongest increase in the value of imports since May 2022.  In the first ten months of 2023, China’s exports to the European Union dropped 10.6 per cent, while its imports from the EU fell 1.3 per cent year-on-year. Nevertheless, the total value of China’s imports from the EU was still only slightly more than half of the value of its exports to the European Union.


XINHE: The sixth China International Import Expo and the Hongqiao International Economic Forum opened on 5th November in Shanghai.

MARIANN: In his keynote speech delivered at the opening ceremony, Chinese Premier Li Qiang called the expo a big platform full of opportunities and added that this year’s event attracted over 3,400 exhibitors. The Premier vowed that China would continue opening up its market, and highlighted the opportunities the country’s large population could bring to international players in terms of consumer demand. He also echoed President Xi’s pledge at the opening of the Belt and Road Forum in October, when he said China would remove all restrictions on foreign investment in the manufacturing sector.


XINHE: At an annual conference of EU diplomats held in Brussels on 6th November, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced that the next EU-China summit is to take place in December.

MARIANN: President von der Leyen will be accompanied by European Council President Charles Michel to the first EU-China summit in four years to be held in person. The last round of EU-China summit was held via videoconference on 1st April 2022. Following the summit, President Michel visited Beijing in December and held meetings with Chinese President Xi Jinping and then Premier Li Keqiang. For her part, Ursula von der Leyen visited Beijing in early April this year. On both occasions, the European Chamber held meetings with the two European leaders and briefed them about the business environment in China ahead of their high-level meetings.


XINHE: The International Monetary Fund upgraded its growth forecast for China, but highlighted some problem areas—such as risks related to the property sector, local government debts, and financial stability—where further action is needed.

MARIANN: In a report released on 7th November, the IMF said it expects China’s gross domestic product to grow 5.4 per cent in 2023, upgrading its earlier forecast by 0.4 per cent. Pointing at a continued weakness in the country’s real estate market and faltering external demand, however, the IMF predicts that China’s GDP growth will slow to 4.6 per cent in 2024. Among the areas where the IMF recommended further policy action was support for the readjustment of China’s property sector and structural reforms aimed at addressing local government debt.


XINHE: The European Chamber has launched an event series on the ongoing global race in industrial strategy, in order to decode its implications on the outlook for both geopolitics and trade, as well as how it may impact the corporate strategies of multinational companies.

MARIANN: As the culmination of this event series, on 10th November, European Commissioner for Internal Market Thierry Breton will join a lunch meeting with the European Chamber’s members and share his insights on EU de-risking in the context of the bloc’s industrial strategy. 


XINHE: Thanks for listening. Tune in again next week.

MARIANN: In the meantime, please find useful links in the episode notes.

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